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Full text of "Blake v. Loconte, Board of Inquiry, March 1980 BOI 110"

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MAR 1 3 1980 


R.S.O. 1970, c. 318, as amended 




The complaint, as amended, of Ms. Etna Blake 
of Etobicoke, Ontario, that she was discrimi- 
nated against in the occupancy of a commerci- 
al unit because of her race, colour, ancestry 
and/or place of origin, by Mr. N. Loconte, 
2843 Weston Road, Ontario, contrary to para- 
graph 3(1 )(a) and/or (b) of the Ontario Human 
Rights Code, R.S.O. 1970, c. 318, as amended. 

Mr. Thomas Lederer, Esq., Ministry of the 
Attorney General - Counsel for the Ontario 
Human Rights Commission. 

Mr. Frank Loconte 

Esq . , Counsel for Mr. 

Mr. Stanley Gelman, Esq 
Etna Blake. 

Counsel for Ms. 

Peter A. Cumming, appointed a Board of Inquiry 
in the above matter by the Minister of Labour, 
The Honourable Robert Elgie, by form of ap- 
pointment dated September 5, 1979, to hear and 
decide the complaint. 



The Evidence 

The Complainant in this hearing, Mrs. Etna Blake, alleges 
she was discriminated against in the occupancy of a commercial unit 
because of her race, colour, ancestry and/or place of origin by 
Mr. N. Loconte, 2843 Weston Road, Weston, Ontario, contrary to 
paragraphs 3(1) (a) and/or (b) of The Ontario Human Rights Code , 
R.S.O. 1970, c. 318, as amended. These provisions read: 

"3.-(D No person, directly or indirectly, alone 
or with another, by himself or by the inter- 
position of another, shall, 

(a) deny to any person or class of persons 
occupancy of any commercial unit or any 
housing accommodation; or 

(b) discriminate against any person or class 
of persons with respect to any term or 
condition of occupancy of any commercial 
unit or any housing accommodation, 

because of race, ... colour, ... ancestry or place 
" of origin of such person or class of persons or 
of any other person or class of persons." 

The Complainant in this matter is 51 years old, a widow, 
and mother of three children, who resides in Etobicoke. She is 
a self-employed business person, the active partner in a hairstyling 
salon business at 59 Dundas Street West, Mississauga, known as 
"Leone's Hair Salon" (hereinafter called "Leone's"). Mrs. Blake 
emigrated to Canada in 1965 from Jamaica. She is well-trained as 
a hairdresser/beautician and has worked as such for some thirty-three 
years. Mrs. Blake first went into business for herself in 1970, 
and then purchased Leone's on September 13, 1976 (Exhibits #4 and #5 
include the Offer to Purchase and Bill of Sale) in partnership 

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with Hedley Montgomery of Toronto, from Mrs. Rita Leone. They 
took control of the business October 13, 1976. Both Mrs. Blake 
and Hedley Montgomery are black. Mr. Montgomery has been a 
'silent partner 1 and for virtually all purposes Mrs. Blake has 
operated the business on her own at the times relevant to this 

The premises known as 59 Dundas Street West, Mississauga 
are owned by Isabella and Nicola Loconte . These premises are 
clearly a "commercial unit" within the meaning of section 3(1) (a) 
and (b) of The Code. The lease (Exhibit #4) for the premises was 
assigned (the Assignment of Lease was filed as Exhibit #7) by the 
previous tenant (Mrs. Rita Leone, the owner of Leone's) to Mrs. 
Blake and Mr. Montgomery with the consent of the Locontes, without 
the Locontes meeting either Mrs. Blake or Mr. Montgomery. Nicola 
Loconte, the Respondent to this Complaint, in fact makes all 
decisions as landlord in respect of the property and Mrs. Loconte 
is not a party to the proceeding nor was she a witness. 

Nicola Loconte, a supermarket proprietor, purchased 
59 Dundas Street West, Mississauga in March, 19 73 as an investment. 
Mr. Vern Leone operated Leone's (with Rita Leone as the nominal 
owner of his business) at the time ownership to the premises was 
assumed by the Locontes. 

Mr. Vern Leone stayed on for some weeks after Mrs. Blake 
and Mr. Montgomery purchased his business, to familiarize the 
purchasers with the business. Mr. Leone lived in an apartment 
above Leone's. 

- 3 - 

About November 1st, Mr. Leone telephoned Mr. Loconte for 
the purpose of having him come to Leone's to meet Mrs. Blake, his 
new tenant. 

Mrs. Blake testified that when Mr. Loconte arrived at 
Leone's, and she introduced herself, he refused to shake hands 
with her and was taken aback (Evidence, p. 22) . She said Mr. 
Loconte then went and knocked on Mr. Leone's apartment door and 
Mr. Leone came downstairs and outside to where he and Mr. Loconte 
had a very heated argument. Mrs. Blake said that they actually 
"struck each other" (Evidence, p. 23). Mrs. Blake testified that 
she listened through a slightly opened door, and overheard Mr. 
Loconte say to Mr. Leone words to the effect, "why do you have to 
' sell the business to a nigger because I don't want to have any- 
thing to do with these people?" (Evidence, pp. 22-23, 72, see also 
the Complaint, being Exhibit #3.) 

Verne Leone, age 42, testified as well. He said that in 
obtaining from Mr. Loconte his consent to assigning the lease, 
there were no questions about the identity of the new tenants, 
other than as to whether they were financially sound. 

Mr. Leone confirmed he had telephoned Mr. Loconte to 
come and meet his new tenant. He said when he answered his 
apartment door to Mr. Loconte ' s knock, Mr. Loconte appeared very 
upset and showed great disappointment, and asked why Mr. Leone 
had sold his business to "such kind of race of people". (Evidence, 
pp.151, 158, 159, 150, 161). Mr. Leone's testimony was certain in stating that 

the clear inference he had was that Mr. Loconte's words meant reference to Mrs. 
Blake's colour. Although Mr. Leone did not recall an explicit reference to the 
word "nigger" being used, Mr. Leone said Mr. Loconte was so upset that he fear- 
ed Mr. Loconte might strike him. 

Mr. Loconte's testimony was that in response to Mr. 
Leone's telephone call he had gone to the premises, introduced 
himself to Mrs. Blake as the owner, whereupon Mrs. Blake had 
thrown him out. He was then upset and mad at Mrs. Leone for 
having obtained such a rude person as tenant and suggested any 
references to Mrs. Blake were in the context of her having been 
rude to himl ( Evidence , pp.281 - 283), but admitted on cross-examination that 
he did use words to Mr. Leone in the nature of "why did you sell to such a race 
of people?" ( Evidence , pp.3&2, 363). 

Mr. Loconte is a hard-working, industrious individual. 


It is also clear that he is quite emotional, quick-tempered and 
stubborn, and very self-righteous. 

I accept the testimony of Mrs. Blake as to the nature of 
her first meeting with Mr. Loconte. Mr. Leone was an independent, 
and impressive witness, and his evidence really confirmed Mrs. 
Blake's evidence on every essential point. 

Hedley Montgomery, age 45, Mrs. Blake's silent partner at 
the relevant times, testified that he spoke with Mr. Loconte two 
or three times. He said he called Mr. Loconte after Mr. Loconte's 
first encounter with Mrs. Blake and was met with the response by 
Mr. Loconte to the effect that if he knew that "you people was going to buy the 
business, I would prevent the sale" which Mr. Montgomery interpreted as meaning 

- 5 - 

that this view was expressed by Mr. Loconte because Mr. Montgomery and Mrs. Blake 
were black. ( Evidence , p. 111). 

Leaving aside for the moment the question as to whether Mr. Loconte 's 
statements and actions at his first meeting with Mrs. Blake constituted discri- 
mination within the meaning of the Code , it is clear that his actions and state- 
ments were discriminatory in fact. Mr. Loconte undoubtedly directed his anger 
mainly at Mr. Leone, to the point, at the least, of giving an impression he 
would use physical violence against him. But his anger toward Mr. Leone was 
entirely because Mr. Leone had assigned his lease to black tenants. He object- 
ed to Mrs. Blake as a tenant because she is black and his conduct toward her 
was reprehensible.. 

The morning after the above-described encounter, Mrs. Blake said she 
telephoned Vern Cunningham, the real estate agent who negotiated the purchase 
of the business on her behalf. Mr. Cunningham testified she was very upset 
and crying on the phone. Mr. Cunningham testified that Mrs. Blake said Mr. Lo- 
conte "was very angry with her and names were mentioned like "nigger" ( Evidence , 
p. 172). He said he Tater telephoned Mr. Loconte that day about the situation 
and Mr. Loconte said in fact he was upset at Mr. Leone, that as he had black 
people working in his food store he could not be considered to be discrimina- 
tory, and apologized if Mrs. Blake was left with the false impression that she 
had been discriminated against ( Evidence , p. 173). Whether Mr. Loconte was 
truthful or not in his explanation (and I find he was not) or sincere in his 
apology (and I find he was not) Mrs. Blake testified she accepted it for what 
it was worth and was prepared to "leave it at that" ( Evidence , pp.69, 70). 

A further allegation turned upon Mr. Loconte's putting the premises 
up 'for sale'. The Complainant asserted that this was to harass the Complain- 
ant because of her colour and race. 

- 6 - 

Michel Ursini, Mr. Loconte's real estate agent, testified that the 
59 Dundas St. W. property was first listed for sale by Mr. Loconte in October, 
1977 ( Evidence , p. 377, Exhibit #16 being produced in support), and that he had 
continued difficulties with Mrs. Blake in trying to show the premises to pros- 
pective purchasers, due to the limited times she would make the premises avail- 
able for viewing ( Evidence , pp.378, 379). Although the listing agreement (Ex- 
hibit #16) filed by Mr. Ursini, is dated 27 October, 1977, it is possible that 
a sign was placed in the premises at an earlier date, without an agreement. 

Mrs. Blake on the other hand, testified that a "for sale" sign went 
up very shortly after she moved in, ( Evidence , p. 38) (her evidence in this re- 
gard being supported by that of Vern Cunningham) ( Evidence , p. 409) and that Mr. 
Ursini 's attempts to show prospective purchasers the premises would have dis- 
rupted her business and that, therefore, she wanted them to come only at cer- 
tain times ( Evidence , pp.73, 74, 413, 414). 

The 'asking price' for the property seems to have been unrealistic- 
ally high. Mr. Loconte had paid $80,000. in 1974, and listed it in 1977 for 
$129,000 ( Evidence , p. 373). He claimed he received an offer for $112,000. 
which he refused ( Evidence , p. 374). In any event, the property was unsold as 
of the date of the hearing, November 8, 1 978, and Mr. Ursini 's listing index, 
Exhibit #18 shows a reduced asking price of $125,000. as of June 30, 1 978 . » 

On all the evidence, I accept the evidence of Mrs. Blake as to when 
the r for sale' sign went up. In my view, although Mr. Loconte was prepared 
to sell the premises if he could receive a price above the market price, at 
least one reason for putting the 'for sale' sing up, and trying to show the 
premises, was to harass Mrs. Blake whom he did not want as a tenant. 

There was further evidence of harassment. 

Mrs. Bernice Bryce, a customer of Mrs. Blake's testified she was 

- 7 - 

present in Leone's premises one day about March, 1978, when Mr. (Jrsini came in- 
to the salon and had a heated discussion with Mrs. Blake in which Mr. Ursini 
made a racial reference ( Evidence , pp.186, 189) and Mrs. Blake threatened to 
throw him out. Mr. Bryce is black. She was an impressive, impartial witness. 
I accept her evidence. Although Mr. Loconte cannot be held responsible for the 
remarks of his real estate agent (in the absence of any evidence suggesting the 
agent was expressing the views on behalf of his principal), the incident is 
pertinent to the question of credibility and also shows generally the position 
Mrs. Blake felt herself to be in which respect to her landlord and his attitude 
toward her. She understandably felt she was being harassed ( Evidence , p. 38). 

The next matter to be considered is the manner of payment of rent. There 
was testimony that Mr. Loconte suggested that the rent due from Mrs. Blake be paid 
through Mr. Leone as intermediary, but that Mr. Leone refused ( Evidence , p. 153). 
There was further testimony that Mrs. Blake had to leave the rent with a nearby 
shopkeeper, a tailor, from whom Mr. Loconte would pick it up ( Evidence , p. 154). 
There were two rental cheques returned by the bank to Mr. Loconte as being "NSF". 
These were paid after Mr. Loconte called Mrs. Blake, she explaining in her testi- 
mony that on one occasion the cheque had been misdirected to the wrong branch of 
her bank, and on the other that she was held up in making the necessary covering 
deposit because she was attending a court hearing involving a son. She tesiti- 
fied that on a third occasion Mr. Loconte called her to say the rental cheque 
was not honoured, and came down to her premises, whereupon she determined the. 
cheque in fact had not been presented to her bank for payment, and that she 
went to the bank, got the money, and on returning to the store gave Mr. Loconte 
the money, although he refused to take it directly from her hand ( Evidence , p. 
29). Mr. Loconte denied this last assertion, countering that his only real 
concern was her apparent lack of funds and her properly meeting her obligation. 

- 8 - 

Certainly Mr. Loconte is within his rights in expecting, and demanding, ren- 
tal payments as and when required by the lease, and he too in turn had mortgage and 
property tax payments obligations in respect of the property. However, Mr. Leone 
testified that on various occasions when he had the business that he would be 

late in making payment of his rent, but would call Mr. Loconte and found him pa- 


tient and understanding ( Evidence , pp.155, 156). 

In my view, the evidence as to the payment of rent subsequent to Mr. Loconte 's 
first encounter with Mrs. Blake, gives further support to Mrs. Blake in her con- 
tention that Mr. Loconte was treating her differently from the way he would treat 
another tenant who was of a different colour and racial origin. Mr. Leone's test- 
imony was clearly to the effect that he inferred from all the circumstances that 
Mr. Loconte continued to show resentment toward Mrs. Blake because of her colour 
and race ( Evidence , pp.154, 155). 

The original lease was for a rent of $300. per month, and expired March 31, 
1978, but the lease (Exhibit #4) contained the following term: 

The Lessees shall have the privilege of renewing the 
within lease for a further term of three years of its 
maturity upon the same terms and conditions as herein 
contained except the rent which is to be negotiated 
on the basis of the rent for comparable premises in- 
like location and shall be subject to arbitration is 
no agreement is reached. Save that there shall be no 
further renewal. The Lessee shall have the first 
right of refusal on any sale of the premises by the 

There was serious conflict about the question of renewal. 

Mrs. Blake testified that a week before the expiry of the lease Mr. Loconte' 
came to the store with another man (Mr. Ursini, who later testified) and asked 
if she wanted to renew, that she said yes, and Mr. Loconte said she would hear 
from Mr. Loconte' s lawyer. ( Evidence , pp.29, 30). 

- 9 - 

Rent has been paid at $600. per month since then and the evidence was not 
clear at all as to whether this is being done on a basis of being conditional 
by agreement upon the outcome of this hearing ( Evidence , pp.37, 72, 82). It 
is clear, at the least, that the rent of $600. /month was paid under protest 
(Evidence, pp.134, 136, 338, 344.) There have been two late payments ( Evidence , 
p. 295, Exhibits #10 and #11 ). 

However, it would seem that Mrs. Blake received a letter dated March 1, 
1978 (Exhibit #8) demanding to know whether she wished to renew, at a rental of 
$675. a month, shortly after March 1. Mrs. Blake said she tried unsuccessfully 
to deal with Mr. Loconte and then turned the matter over to Mr. Montgomery. He 
testified he called Mr. Loconte's lawyer but did not reach him, and called Mr. 
Loconte but was told his lawyer would fix the rent and received no offer to ne- 
gotiate or arbitrate ( Evidence , pp. -11 3, 114). On cross-examination Mr. Mont- 
gomery recalled that he in fact spoke with Mr. Loconte's lawyer in March and 
it was explained to him that the rent control legislation in force in Ontario 
did not limit a landlord of a commercial property as to rent ( Evidence , pp.127, 

Mr. Loconte testified he went to the premises with Mr. Ursini before March 
' 1 to ask Mrs. Blake if she wanted to renew the lease. Mr. Loconte said she ad- 
vised him she wanted to renew, but he was to speak with her lawyer ( Evidence , 
p. 289). Mr. Loconte said that because of this approach, he in turn went to 
his lawyer and the letter of March 1 was consequentially written (Exhibit #8). 
Exhibit #8 makes no reference to any meeting between Mr. Loconte and Mrs. Blake, 
and, if anything, by its language on the face of it implies it was sent before 
any meeting between the landlord and his tenant. 

In my view, it seems that Mrs. Blake and Mr. Montgomery did not act as 
quickly as was prudent in concluding the renewal. However, it seems on all the 

- 10 - 

evidence that they had told Mr. Loconte they intended to renew prior to the 
expiry of the existing lease ( Evidence , pp.341 to 346). The evidence on the 
record as well (Exhibit #9 - Evidence , p. 36) is that their counsel advised Mr. 
Loconte 1 s lawyer on March 30 that the lease was being renewed. There was no 
evidence denying this assertion, although it is clear the evidence could have 
been given if it was not the fact. As well, a letter of April 6 (Exhibit #13) 
from counsel for Mrs. Blake to counsel for Mr. Loconte indicated the lease was 
to be renewed, said a rent of $450. /month was being tendered and that arbitra- 
tion should be proceeded with if this was not satisfactory. 

Neither the Lessor, Mr. Loconte, nor the Lessee, Mrs. Blake sought arbi- 
tration in respect of the outstanding, disputed issue as to the amount of rent 
to be paid ( Evidence , pp.55, 56, 80). 

Mr. Loconte has had two supermarket businesses over the past eight years 
as a tenant. He is an experienced businessman. Although he testified he does 
not read English, he admitted on cross-examination that he was well aware of 
the terms of the renewal in respect of his lease with Mrs. Blake ( Evidence , pp. 
353 to 356). 

There was no new rent agreed upon by April 1, 1978, although it was clear 
the lease had been renewed. There was no rent at all paid April 1 and it was 
not until at least April 11 that a cheque for $450. (dated April 11) (Exhibit 
#13) was sent as being the proferred amount of rent by the tenants. This cheque 
was never cashed. ( Evidence , p. 289, 357). 

Mr. Loconte knew as of April 1 that the lease had been renewed, and his 
lawyer knew as well, but nevertheless had a bailiff lock-up the premises on or 
before April 13, saying he did so on the advice of his lawyer ( Evidence , pp. 
344, 345, 357, 358). The premises were reopened April 13 through the actions 
of the counsel for the parties (see Exhibit #9). 

- 11 - 

Counsel for the Respondent argued that an oral renewal was ineffective 
( Evidence , p. 462). However, in my opinion the Landlord and Tenant Act allows 
for an oral lease (s. 81(e)). In any event Exhibit #9 represents an uncontra- 
dicted written confirmation of the renewal. As well, in my opinion the lessor's 
conduct subsequent to the oral renewal would constitute an estoppel. 

Certainly Mr. Montgomery, Mrs. Blake, and their counsel, would have been 

well advised to have tendered rent of at least $300. as of April 1, and to have 

attempted to proceed to arbitration. Common sense dictated that $300. should 

have been paid April 1. 

However, on all the evidence, it is my view, and I so find, that Mr. Lo- 

conte's treatment of Mrs. Blake throughout the initial tenancy, with respect to 
the renewal, and with respect to having the bailiff seize the premises (without 
warning) were all due to the basic reason that he did not want someone of her 
colour and racial origin as a tenant. Once she had become a tenant, he was 
forced to tolerate her but did so only on a basis of being very nasty and rude 
toward her. The worst instance was on the occasion when he first met her, but 
his ill treatment of her continued in the way he initially required her to pay 
the rent by not taking it directly, and his manner of dealing with her on the 
question of the renewal. I do not believe he would have exercised his right of 
re-entry on or before April 13, without communication with the tenant, if she 
had not been black. (Although the issue as to the lawfulness of the re-entry 
was not argued, I have noted that the lessor was apparently within his rights, 
as the lease provides for immediate re-entry upon default for payment of rent, 
and thus takes the lease outside of s.18(1) of the Landlord and Tenant Act , 
c.236,R.S.O. 1970). 

In contrast to the way Mr. Loconte treated Mrs. Blake in negotiations, 
evidence was led as to his dealing with another tenant. 

- 12 - 

Lois Lipieck testified she had assumed the tenancy to the apartment over 
the salon from Vern Leone, ( Evidence , pp. 192 to 196) sub-letting for $150. per 
month (the rent under the lease being $130. per month). Her lease was at an 
end as of March 31, 1978. She testified Mr. Loconte initially demanded $240. 
per month for a renewal, that she had difficulty in reaching him, but that he 
was willing to negotiate, and that she was able to come to agreement on a rent 
of $210. per month. Mrs. Lipieck said that at no time did Mrs. Loconte suggest 
she must see his lawyer. 

Mrs. Blake may have been dilatory in respect of payment of the rent, but 
this was due to the new amount of rent not yet being determined ( Evidence , pp. 
137). Her actions at the time of renewal were due to naivete or uncertainty 
or the lack of good or prompt advice. She was confused as to the rent control 
legislation, not realizing at first that it pertained only to residential te- 
nancies. She may have been ignorant, she may have delayed, and she may have 
been in a continuing marginal financial position, but she impressed me as be- 
ing an honest, decent, conscientious person. She was in a difficult situation, 
and she was fearful because she had been abused because of her colour and race. 
She was not intentionally delaying or being difficult. The lessor, Mr. Loconte, 
knew the lease had been renewed. He knew the rent remained to be negotiated. 
He was demanding $675. per month (Exhibit #8) but knew his demand had not been 
accepted. The tenant was tendering $450. /month which was more than the rent 
of $300. a month for the initial term. This was known to the Lessor's solici- 
tor on April 10, 1978 (see Exhibit #12). The Lessor was not prepared to nego- 
tiate further. There was a stalemate in the negotiations, but I do not inter- 
pret the 'renewal clause' in the lease as then placing the lessor in a stronger 
position than the lessee. Arbitration was not attempted by either party upon 
no agreement being reached as to the amount of rent upon the renewal . 

- 13 - 


The Complainant asserted that the rent demanded for the renewal, $675. per 
month (the demand being lowered to $600./ month as of April 13) was higher than 
the fair market rental value, and that she was being discriminated against in 
this regard. 

A lessor is, of course, entitled to demand whatever rent he wishes in the 
marketplace which is, in essence, whatever a prospective lessee will pay. 

I have found, on all the evidence, that in the instant situation there was 
a renewal of the lease for the three year period April 1, 1978 to March 31, 1981. 
It is also clear on the evidence, and I so find, that there no agreement as to 
the amount of rent for the renewal term, nor was arbitration sought by either 
party. The lessee has been paying $600. /month rent since April 1, 1978 under 
protest, pending the outcome of this hearing. 

There was some evidence as to what the fair market rental value of the 
premises would be. 

Charles Folz, a Human Rights Officer for the Ontario Human Rights Commis- 
sion in 1978, testified that he investigated the question of comparable rents 
in the plaza. He said there were eight condominium units within the plaza, 
three of which were rental units ( Evidence , p. 199). One three year lease (re 
#71 Oundas) commencing May 1, 1978 provided for rent for two years at $500./ 
month, and for $550. /month for the third year ( Evidence , p. 200). It should 
be noted that this tenant apparently gave up the premises because as of July 
1, 1978 a rental of $600. /month was being paid for a five year term but with 
a five year renewal option period, Exhibit #15, p.ll). A second lease, (re #67 
Dundas) was entered into in 1 977 for a two year term, at $425. /month ( Evidence , 
pp.200, 202, 203, Exhibit #15, p.ll). The third lease at 69 Dundas, provided 
for a rent of $600. /month ( Evidence , pp.201, 202, 206, 207; Exhibit #14, and 
p.ll) of Exhibit #15). However, this lease commenced in 1978 ( Evidence , pp.268,. 

- 14 - 

269) and was for a nine year term, with the rent stepped-up in 1983 to $700. /month 
( Evidence , pp.208, 209). It is clear to me on all the evidence ( Evidence , pp.268 
to 270) that it is fair to conclude that the tenant in respect of that lease was 
prepared to pay a higher rent at the inception of the lease given the length of 
the term and that the rent would only be $700. for the last four years thereof. 

The Ontario Human Rights Commission hired a professional appraiser, Paul M. 
Peppiatt, to investigate and prepare a report, "Rental Study of: A Commercial 
Property 59 Dundas Street West, Mississauga, Ontario" (filed as Exhibit #15). 
Quite commendably, as the Commission did not want to call Mr. Peppiatt as its 
witness given the nature of his report, the Commission made the Respondent's coun- 
sel aware of the appraisal, so that Mr. Peppiatt was called as a witness on behalf 
of Mr. Loconte. 

Mr. Peppiatt's report (Exhibit #15) stated in its included reporting letter: 


As requested, we have made an investigation and valua- 
tion analysis of the retail store located at the above 
address and submit herein our findings. As a result 
of the study carried out, it is our opinion that the 
fair market rental values of the within described pro- 
perty, are as follows: 

April 1 , 1978 - 


($600.00 per month) 

October 31 , 1 979 - 

($650.00 per month) 
(See also pp.12 - 14 of the Report). 

- 15 - 

On all the evidence, I cannot agree with Mr. Peppiatt's opinion. First, 
the average for these three rental properties in the plaza was $541 ./month ( Evi - 
dence , p. 255), the overall average for some nine of the properties in the area 
considered was $530. /month ( Evidence , p. 255) and this included two long-term 
leases. Of all ten properties considered in the analysis, only two were at the 
figure of $600. /month, and one other was slightly higher ( Evidence , p. 256). 

Third, (and this is the significant point) Mr. Peppiatt finally came 
down to saying that his assessment was based on the fact that two properties (#69 ; 
Dundas and #71 Dundas) in the same plaza were paying $600. /month ( Evidence , pp. 
217, 251, 258). However, in my opinion he just did not give sufficient weight to 
the fact that these two leases were for nine and ten year terms (for #71 Dundas, 
the evidence is sketchy as to when the lease commenced, but it could not have 
been before August 14, 1978, as the tenant, Good Guy's Pool Supplies occupied the 
premises at that point in time - Evidence , pp.200, 218). In my opinion, based 
upon all the evidence, the marketplace in these inflationary times would pay a 
higher rent at the inception of a long term (m'ng or ten year) lease, than for a 
shorter, three-year term, lease ( Evidence , pp.221 - 234, 243 - 245, 247 - 251, 
259). In my opinion, Mr. Peppiatt just did not give any, or at least the proper, 
weight to this factor (the length of term of the leases) in considering the two 
leases at $600. /month. In my view, considering all the evidence, I do not think 
a three year lease for 59 Dundas St. W. from April 1, 1978 to March 31, 1981, 
would have brought more than $550. /month and this amount might well be too high. 
In my judgment it is the highest amount that the marketplace would have paid. 
In my view, "the rent for comparable premises in like location" (Exhibit #4) 
would not be higher than $550. /month for a three year term. I do not think Mr. 
Loconte wanted to rent to Mrs. Blake, but he knew he had to appear to give her 
the opportunity. He therefore demanded a rent above the market, of $675. /month 

- 16 - 

and even though he subsequently lowered it to $600. /month he was still demand- 
ing a rent above the market. 

Mr. Loconte is a very emotional, self-righteous person. He is intimidat- 
ing in his demeanour. He also impressed me as being a very hard-working, con- 
scientious individual. I do not believe he bears any malice toward blacks or 
people of Mrs. Blake's racial origin. In my judgment, his behaviour is explain- 
ed because of a preconception that blacks are not as financially capable or res- 
ponsible as Caucasians. Mr. Loconte, understandably, wanted a financially res- 
ponsible tenant. He flew into a rage, and was discriminatory in his language 
and behaviour toward her when he first met her because, as I conclude from all 
the testimony, he thought he had a financially unsatisfactory tenant. He did at 
least ostensibly apologize to Mrs. Blake through Mr. Cunningham for what was said 
at his first meeting with Mrs. Blake. 

I find on the evidence that the Respondent discriminated against the Com- 
plainant in his words and conduct toward her because of her race, colour, ancestry 
and/or place of origin, when he first met her, in the manner of initially receiv- 
ing the payment of rents from her, in putting up a 'for sale' sign primarily to 
harass her, and in refusing to meaningfully try to negotiate the renewal rent 
while at the same time having the bailiff lock-up the premises without any warn- 
ing to her. I find that these words and actions of the Respondent were unlawful 
acts of discrimination contrary to s.3(l)(b) of the Ontario Human Rights Code , 
R.S.O. 1970, c .318, as amended. 

It is useful at this point to review the law relevant to this matter. 

- 17 - 

The Law 

A definitive analysis as to the law pertinent to the subject of discrimina- 
tion in Canada on the basis of "race, colour, national or ethnic origin" can be 
found in a paper "Race, Colour, National Or Ethinic Origin," prepared by Profes- 
sor Walter S. Tarnopolsky for the Canadian Human Rights Commission. He mentions 
that "race" and "colour" are prohibited grounds of discrimination in every anti- 
discrimination Act in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom as well 
as all relevant United Nations' instruments. However, these national and inter- 
national instruments generally do not provide any definition of the terms "race" 
or "colour". Professor Tarnopolsky states: 

Of all the many complaints that have been dealt with 
by Boards of Inquiry under the various anti-discrimi- 
nation Acts of the provinces where race or colour were 
concerned as being the grounds upon which discrimina- 
tion was alleged, only one has attempted to provide 
a definition of the word " race " and this was the 1976 
Board of Inquiry under the Alberta Individual ' s Rights 
Protection Act into the case of Ali v. Such . In this 
case, the complaint described the complainant as being 
"a black Trinidadian" . The Board quoted from Webster 1 s 
New World Dictionary (2d,ed.) and Black's Law Diction- 
ary (rev. 4th. ed. ) and thereupon concluded that "race 
indicates broad or great divisions between mankind, and 
each of the definitions indicates that the races have 
physical pecularities that distinguish one race from 
the other". Applying this definition to the evidence 
the Board concluded that "Ms. Ali belongs to the Ne- 
groid race, and, characteristically, the Negroid race 
has black or dark skin". As mentioned before, no other 
Board of Inquiry has attempted a definition and, it 
would appear, no parties before a Board of Inquiry have 
on any other occasion raised the question of whether in 
fact it is possible to subdivide or classify human be- 
ings by "race" or "colour", or whether the particular 
complainant could be characterized as belonging to any 
such category. Rather, the cases have all dealt with 
such issues as whether the respondent had appreciation 
of the "race" or "colour" which the complainant either 
claimed as applying to him or her, or which appears to 
have been generally acknowledged by all parties at the 
Inquiry upon observation of the complainant to apply to 
him or her J 

At pp.2, 3. 

- 18 - 


In a way all this attempt to define "race" and "colour" 
is somewhat irrelevant to the administration of anti- 
discrimination legislation as the real concern is not 
with the "race" or "colour" or other hereditary origin 
of the individual who has been discriminated against, 
but rather with what the respondent perceives the com- 
plainant to be. Thus, even if a person is seven-eighths 
of European origin and one-eighth of African origin, if 
the respondent perceives that person to be a "Negro" or 
"black" and that characteristic or origin is the ground 
upon which the person is discriminated against, then the 
discrimination is on the grounds of "race" or "colour". 
This is why only one Board of Inquiry has bothered to 
try to define race. In all the others, where the basis 
of the complaint was discrimination on grounds of "race" 
alone, or "race or colour", or "race and ancestry", or 
"race, colour, place of origin", and this includes some 
I three Boards of Inquiry in Alberta, four in British Co- 

f lumbia, one in New Brunswick, four in Nova Scotia, ele- 

ven in Saskatchewan, and about sixty. in Ontario, there 
was no attempt to define "race" or "colour" or "ancestry" 
or "place of origin". 

Professor Tarnopolsky also discusses the meaning of the terms, "nationality, 

ancestry or place of origin" and says, , 

There is really no direct judicial authority in Canada 
distringui shing between the terms "national origin", 
and "nationality" and "citizenship". However, the few 
that do make a direct reference to nationality and/or 
citizenship conform to what has been argued here, i.e. , 
that in the legal sense of describing one's tie to a 
country, the words are used synonymously. 

One must conclude that although the term "nationality" 
has been used in a pol itical -ethnological sense of one's 
membership in a "nation", and may thus remain with a 
person regardless of what that person's legal tie to a 
country is, the other sense in which it has been used 
is synonymously with "citizenship" in the sense of one's 
status arising out of a mutual relationship of protec- 
tion by and allegiance to a particular country. In other 
words, although the term "citizenship" might not include 
all the senses in which "nationality" has been and con- 
tinues to be used, the word "nationality" when used in a 
legal sense is synonymous with the term "citizenship". 

One could go further and say that to the extent that the 
word "nationality" is not synonymous with "citizenship" 
is the extent to which if -describes one's "national ori- 
gin", or, to use the term in the Ontario Human Rights Code, 
one's "ancestry or place of origin". 

At P- U . 4 At pp.28, 29, 

At p. 26 . 

- 19 - 

It is useful to review some of the Canadian decisions that have dealt with 
discrimination in respect of occupancy on the basis of race, colour, nationality, 
ancestry or place of origin of the complainant. 

In Jones v. Huber (Ontario, 1976) a black woman who wished to view an apart- 
ment on behalf of her sister was denied access by the owner who claimed to deny 
it on the grounds of the racial prejudices of his tenants. He claimed that he 
would sustain economic losses as some of his tenants had said that they would 
leave if he permitted black individuals to live there. 

It was held that: "race is an impermissible factor in an apartment rental 
decision and cannot be brushed aside because it was not the sol e reason for the 
discrimination. So long as it was one of the considerations, it will constitute 
a violation of the Ontario Human Rights Code " (p. 4). 

It was also held that "(f)ear of economic loss cannot justify discriminatory 
conduct on the part of the Respondents" (p. 4). 

No special damages were assessed as the Board could not surmise whether or 
not the woman would have agreed to rent the premises in question if she had seen 

General damages were ordered in the nominal amount of $50, because the woman 
herself was not the direct victim as her sister had acted as her agent, but that 
she did experience a degree of indignity in learning of the incident. 

In Lam v. McCan (Ontario, 1976) the landlord gave notice to quit upon grounds 
which would have been acceptable under the Landlord and Tenant Act R.S.O. 1970, 
but the tenants believed the real reason to be racial discrimination. The com- 
plainants moved and the landlord subsequently advertised the premises. It was 
held that the landlord's substantial or primary reasons in terminating the ten- 
ancy were not those stated in the notice to terminate but rather were rooted in 
racial discrimination which constitutes a breach of the Ontario Human Rights Code , 
s. 3 "even though other and proper grounds may or do exist on the basis of which 

- 20 - 

the landlord could terminate the tenancy" (p. 5). 

The complainants did not want reinstatement of the lease. 

General damages in' the amount of $350.00 were assessed against the landlord. 

In addition, special damages were ordered in the amount of $150.00 which was 
made up as follows: 

(1) $100.00 for special expenses incurred as a result of being forced to 

(2) $50.00 as a credit for the cost of redecorating materials. 

In Nawagesic v. Crupi (Ontario, 1978) it was held that the complainant had 
been discriminated against by being denied any opportunity to rent the housing 
accomodation available becuase of his race, colour or ancestry. 

General damages in the amount of $500.00 were awarded for the injury to the 
feelings and dignity of the complainant caused by the landlord's discrimination. 
A letter of apology from the landlord to the complainant was also ordered, as was 
a letter from the landlord to the Ontario Human Rights Commission assuring com- 
pliance with the Ontario Human Rights Code in the future. 

In Nawagesic v. Rauman (Ontario, 1978) the landlord refused to rent the ac- 
comodation available to the complainant, a Canadian Indian, until "other people 
have seen the apartment." (p. 6). The complainant believed this action by the 
landlord to be based on discrimination whereas the landlord claimed that it was 
due to skepticism as to the complainants means of support. 

It was held that mere suspicions of discrimination were not enough and on 
a balance of probabilities the landlord was given the benefit of the doubt. The 
failure of meaningful communication as between the two principals was found to 
be the source of the complaint and the majority of the responsibility for this 
failure and for the resultant necessity of a Board of Inquiry was attributed to 
the landlord. 

In Maraj v. Zuonko and Kozlovac (Ontario, 1975) the respondent having ac- 
quired an apartment building in which the complainant, a Trinidadian of East In- 

- 21 - 

dian descent, was resident, raised the rent of the complainant and verbally abused 
him on the basis of race and colour. 

During the recess following the hearing, the parties arrived at a compromise. 
As a result the only finding made is that the respondents did discriminate against 
the complainant in contravention of 3(1 )(b) of the Ontario Human Rights Code . 

The respondents were ordered to pay the complainant $300.00 as compensation 
and damages; to write a letter of apology to the complainant; and to offer to rent 
to the complainant the next available apartment in the building. 

Further, the respondents were ordered to post "Ontario Human Rights Code 
Cards"; to notify the Ontario Human Rights Commissions of vacancies as they occur 
for a period of one year; to write to two ethnic clubs advising them of their fair 
rental policy and to write to the Ontario Human Rights Commission assuring compli- 
ance with the Ontario Human Rights Code. 

In the case of J ahn v. Johnstone (Ontario, 1977) the complainant charged that 
the landlord discriminated against her by interfering with her quiet enjoyment of 
the dwelling on account of the race, colour and place of origin; not of herself, 
but of her guest, a black man. This was the first case "to consider the meaning 
and application of the provision forbidding discrimination because of the charac- 
teristics, not of the tenant or would-be tenant, but of any other person or class 
of persons," a ground which was added to the Code by Statutes of Ontario 1972, 
c.119, section 4. 

It was held that the complainant's right to quiet enjoyment was infringed by 
the respondent's demands that the complainant restrict her visitors to white peo- 
ple and that this infringement constituted discrimination against the complain- 

It was also held that the respondent contravened section 3(1 )(b) of the 
Human Rights Code by discriminating against the complainant on account of the 
race of another person. 

The respondent was ordered to pay general damages of $200.00. Special da- 

- 22 - 

mages were also ordered to compensate the complainant for out-of-pocket expenses 
in moving and for the difference in the cost of the rent plus heating expenses 
at the premises of the respondent on the one hand and the rent at her new resi- 
dence for the interval between the lodging of the complaint and its hearing by 
the Board. 

The order also contained the following requirements: letters of apology to 
the complainant and her guest; a letter of assurance of future compliance to the 
Ontario Human Rights Commission and notification of the Ontario Human Rights Com- 
mission of vacancies, on the part of the respondent. 

In Copenace v. West (Ontario, 1979) an agent of the landlady rented her house 
to the complainants, a Native Indian family of three. The landlady was unaware of 
the origin of the new tenants at the time. The hosue had previously been rented 
to Native Indians for 34 years and the last tenants had not behaved in what the 
Landlord and Tenant Act , R.S.O. 1970 would deem a "tenant-Tike" manner. The new 
tenants, the complainants, were very good tenants. The landlady discovered 
the ethnic origin of the complainants when she visited and told the new tenants 
that they had to clean up the garbage in the yard which had been left by the pre- 
vious tenants or face notice to vacate, which was subsequently given. The ques- 
tion considered by the Board was whether or not the respondent was motivated by 
the fact that the complainants were Native Indians. 

It was held that the respondent did in fact discriminate contrary to section 
3(1) (a) of the Ontario Human Rights Code . 

The respondent was ordered to pay the male and the female complainant each 
$900.00 for general damages and to pay the male complainant an additional $200.00 
for loss of income stemming from the eviction. 

The respondent was also required to send a letter of apology to the complain- 
ant and to offer them the first available vacancy in her rental premises. 

Also, the respondent was required to notify the Ontario Human Rights Commis- 
sion of any vacancies for a period of 2 years and that the Commission be permitted 

- 23 - 

to monitor her rental practices during this time. 

In Greyeyes v. Charneira (Saskatchewan, 1975) the respondent refused to rent 
a basement suite to the complainants who were of Canadian Indian ancestry and 
launched a virulent tirade condemning Indians in general . 

It was held that the respondent had contravened Section 9 of The Saskatchewan 
Bill of Rights , R.S.S. 1965, Chapter 378 by discriminating on the grounds of race 
and ancestry in denying the rental of living accomodation. 

The respondent was ordered to pay to the complainant: general damages in the 
amount of $300.00, and special damages for motel accomodation expenses of $54.00; 
the full amount to be paid within 30 days. 

The respondent was also ordered to report any future vacancies to the Saska- 
tchewan Human Rights Commission. 

In Bird v. Gabel (Saskatchewan, 1974) the respondent refused to rent a motel 
room to the complainant, a Saulteaux Indian, who then made a complaint to the 

It was held that the respondent was guilty of discrimination, on the basis 
of race and ancestry; and that, following The Gabbidon and Galas Inquiry (Ontario, 
1973) it is unnecessary to lead evidence of humiliation and impaired feelings. 

General damages in the amount of $100.00 were awarded to the complainant. 

The respondent was required to send a letter of apology to the complainant, 
a letter of assurance of future compliance to the Saskatchewan Human Rights Com- 
mission and to post "Declaration of Management Policy" Cards provided by the Com- 
mission . 

In Laval lee v. Lloyd Realty Development Ltd. and Lloyd Rogers of Reqina 
(Saskatchewan, 1976) the complainant, a native Indian woman, was not given acco- 
modation but a white woman who was staying at the same transition house and whose 
application was made later got accomodation promptly. 

It was held that an employee of the respondent had discriminated on illegal 
grounds and that the respondent had not made adequate efforts to remedy thesitua- 

- 24 - 


General damages of $300.00 were awarded to the complainant, following Greye - 
yes v. Charneira (Saskatchewan, 1975). 

The Board also ordered the respondent to conduct a proper investigation of 
the complainant in the event of her re-application for accomodation. 

In Norris v. Michalski ( Saskatchewan, 1977 ) the landlord refused to rent 
accomodation to an Air Force man whose wife was black. 

It was held that discrimination had occurred. 

General damages were awarded in the amount of $300.00; and the respondent 
was ordered to offer the first available accomodation to the complainant and to 
send written assurances of compliance with the Human Rights legislation of the 
Province of Saskatchewan to the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission. 

In Ali v. Such (Alberta, 1976) the complainant, a Black Trinidadian, was re- 
fused the opportunity of renting an apartment because of her race. 

It was held that the respondent had denied accomodation to the complainant 
on the grounds of race in contravention of Section 4(a) of The Individual's Rights 
Protection Act . 

No specific damages were assessed as the claims made were for approximate 
amounts and the complainant was unavailable for questioning on the matter. 
No general damages were assessed. 

A recommendation was made that the Alberta Human Rights Commission obtain 
assurances from the respondent that he would refrain from similar or other con- 
traventions in the future. 

In Oxouzidis and Oxouzidis v. Chahel and Chanel (British Columbia, 1975) Mr. 
Chahel refused to rent accomodation to the complainants because Mrs. Oxouzidis 
was a native Indian and in the opinion of the respondent "they were not good te- 
nants." (p. 5). 

It was held that the respondents contravened Section 9(a) of the B.C. Human 
Rights Act by discriminating on the grounds of race. 

- 25 - 

As the complainants no longer wished to rent the accomodation and sought 
only to have the respondents restrained from future contraventions, no order as 
to damages was made. The Board ordered the respondents to refrain from commit- 
ting the same or similar contraventions. 

In Khan v. Pieschel (British Columbia, 1975) an East Indian family was de- 
nied the rental of a trailer in a trailer park and evicted from the camp ground 
where they had been tenting after refusing to pay a rental fee of $20.00 per day. 

It was held that the excessive rental fee demanded was based on a discrimi- 
natory attitude of the respondent toward the race of the complainant. 

The Board of Inquiry ordered the respondent to send a letter of apology to 
the complainant. 

No damages were sought. 

In Sam v. Tymchischin (British Columbia, 1976) a hotel manager refused to 
rent a room to a native Indian woman on the ground of her race. Subsequently he 
offered to rent to a white woman and in the course of the conversation denounced 
Indians as a group and said he would not rent to them. 

It was held that the behaviour of the respondent was a flagrant discrimina- 
tory act under Section 3 of the B.C. Human Rights Code; and was unquestionably 
attributable to the racial prejudices of the respondent. 

The Board issued an order that the respondents refrain from committing fur- 
ther contraventions. 

General damages in the amount of $500.00 were awarded to the complainant. 

The respondent was ordered to pay the complainant $750.00 by way of costs as 

wel 1 . 

In Nelson v. Gubbins and Byron Price and Associates Ltd. (British Columbia, 
1975) the complainants, a native Indian couple were denied the right to occupy 
premises as tenants by the respondents Gubbins who served as managers for the res- 
pondent Byron Price. 

It was held that there was a representation as to the availability of space 

- 26 - 

for occupancy; and that the respondents did deny to the complainants the right 
to occupy space because of their race in contravention of Section 5(1) (a) of the 
B.C. Human Rights Code. 

Aggravated damages for humiliation in the amount of $150.00 were awarded to 
the complainant. Byron Price was found vicariously responsible and therefore 
jointly liable with Mrs. Gubbins for payment. 

On appeal, the complaint on grounds of vicarious liability against Bryon 

Price and Associates was dismissed as the imposition of vicarious liability was 
a common law relief which the Board was without authority to grant. 

In Morgan v. Nodland (Nove Scotia, 1974) the complainants rented accomoda- 
tion from the respondent by agreement between Mrs. Morgan who is white and Mr. 
Nodland. When Mr. Nodland first saw Mr. Morgan, who is black, painting the living 
room he was obviously shocked. The respondent left, then returned and told Mrs. 
Morgan that he would not rent to them. 

It was held that the respondent denied occupancy to Mr. Morgan because of 
his colour. 

SpeciaT damages totaling $225.00 were awarded to Mr. Morgan in compensation 
for a cash deposit of $50.00, the cost of power hook up, transportation to and 
from the premises for the purposes of cleaning, painting and moving furniture 
and lost wages. The respondent was also ordered to post a Nova Scotia Human 

Rights Scroll on the premises. 

In Pate v. Wonnacott (Nova Scotia, 1970) the respondent refused rental acco- 
modation to the complainant who was black despite his having good references. 

It was held that the basis of such refusal was discrimination on the grounds 
of colour and race. 

This was the first case in Nova Scotia to go to the stage of PUblic Inquiry 
and it followed Amber v. Leader (Ontario, 1970). 

The Board ordered the respondent to make an apology to the complainant, as 
well as an offer of accomodation at the earliest occurrence of a vacancy. 

- 27 - 

- Section 14c. of The Ontario Human Rights Code provides that 

after hearing a complaint a board shall decide whether or not any 

party has contravened the Act and 

(b) may order any party who has contravened this Act 
to do any act or thing that, in the opinion of 
the board, constitutes full compliance with such 
provision or to make compensation therefor. 

If the Board's decision is that the landlord has breached the Code 
by his rental practices, typical orders include any or all of the follow- 
ing measures: 

1) The posting of The Ontario Human Rights Code in the 
lobby of the apartment building along with a declaration 
that the owner subscribes to the practices recommended by 
the Code . 

2) A monetary award to cover extra expenses incurred 
by the complainant in finding alternate accommodation. 
The complainant is often remunerated for extra trans- 
portation costs and occasionally remunerated for the 
difference in rent between the accommodation which he 
or she eventually leased and the accommodation denied 
to him if the two premises were comparable (ie. the 
same size and type of accommodation) and if the accom- 
modation eventually rented was more expensive than the 
accommodation denied to the complainant. 

3) An order directing the landlord to offer the next 
suitable vacancy to the complainant. 

4) An order directing the landlord to contact 
local minority group associations (usually restricted 
to the minority group associations representing the 
minority group of the complainant) when vacancies 
occur to advertise such vacancies before the landlord 
advertises the vacancies in local papers. Thus, the 
minority group offended should be offered the vacancies 
before the general public. The order may be to have the 
landlord inform the Ontario Human Rights Commission as 
to any vacancy in premises owned by the landlord. 

5) An award of general damages in the form of money to 
be paid by the landlord to the complainant to compensate 
for injury to feelings and dignity. An articulate view 
of one Board of Inquiry with respect to general damages 
is helpful: 

- 28 - 

"In my opinion, a Board of Inquiry has a fair amount 
of leeway in setting the quantum of general damages before 
it can be said that the Board has overstepped its functions 
and taken on the job of "punishing" offending conduct instead 
of "compensating" its victims. The legislature has deter- 
mined that a court may award a fine up to $1,000.00 if it 
finds, after a trial, that a breach of any provision of the 
Code has occurred (see section 15(c) of the Code). This 
amount suggests two things. First of all, it is a guide 
to the level of community disapproval for offenses against 
the standards of behavior set out in the Code; that level 
is, by this token, reasonably high. One can keep that in 
mind when assessing the compensation for injury to dignity 
that should be paid to a member of the community who has 
suffered discrimination. Secondly, the amount of penalty 
exigible after a criminal trial, with its higher standards 
of proof than those of a Board of Inquiry, does suggest 
an upper limit on the quantum of general damages which 
can be awarded without passing from the realm of com- 
pensation. "1 

As a general note tomost of the abovementioned monetary awards, I 
might add that I find Boards of Inquiry somewhat conservative in the 
sums awarded. Even when damages are awarded to compensate the complainant 
for extra expenses incurred, Boards appear to tend not to compensate for 
all the probable expenses. General damages for injury to feelings and 
dignity have tended to be between one and two hundred dollars. More 
recently, however, much higher awards have been given. 2 

I have found on all the evidence that Mr. Loconte discriminated against 
Mrs. Blake because of her race, colour, ancestry and/or place of origin. 
Mr. Loconte himself is an immigrant whose ancestry is that of a people who 
have made a tremendously valuable contribution to Canada in every respect. 
He seemed to me to be a hard-working citizen who has done well in this coun- 
try and who has made his own significant contribution. I doubt that he bears 

'In the matter of Jahn v. Johnstone , September 16, 1977 at page 22, 
Mary Eberts, Board of Inquiry. 

'See in the matter of Morgan v. Toronto General Hospital , October 14, 1977, 
Walter S. Tarnopolsky, Board of Inquiry, in which $1700 was awarded as 
general damages for injury and feelings and dignity because of a contravention 
of section 4(1) (a) of the Code. 

- 29 - 

any conscious malice toward blacks. I infer that he acted as he did toward 
Mrs. Blake because his view of blacks is that of an unfavourable and incor- 

rect stereotype. His fixed mental impression is that someone who is black 
cannot'be a financially responsible tenant, and that he, as landlord should 
not rent to a black, or if forced to have a black tenant, can treat her in 
a discriminatory manner because he would prefer her to cease to be a tenant 
simply because she is black. Mr. Loconte fails to appreciate that in Canada 
human rights and the dignity of every person are not subsidiary to property 
rights . 

The Ontario Human Rights Code includes within its Preamble and section 9 
the following precepts: 

Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and the 
equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human 
family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in 
the world and is in accord with the Universal Declaration 
of Human Rights as proclaimed by the United Nations; 

An Whereas it is public policy in Ontario that 
every person is free and equal in dignity and rights 
without regard to race, creed, colour, sex, marital status, 
nationality, ancestry or place of origin. 

The Commission shall 

(a) forward the principle that every person is free and 
equal in dignity and rights without regard to race, 
creed, colour, age, sex, marital status, nationality, 
ancestry or place of origin; 

The belief in the fundamental equality of all persons as expressed 
in The Ontar io Human Rights Code is fundamental to the fabric of our 

Every statement about the nature of racial discrimi- 
nation is based, more or less explicitly upon an idea 
of the quality of human beings, which has advanced to 
its present form only relatively recently. The origins 
of this idea of human equality may be traced to the°tra- 
ditional Judaeo -Christian belief in Fatherhood of God 
and hence in the brotherhood of men, each with equal 
humanity and significance. 

- 30 - 

• • • 

This perception of Che fundamental equality of men as men, 
despite the manifold differences between individuals, lies 
at the heart of liberal and democratic thought in the West. 

The public policy underlying The Ontario Human Rights Code goes to 
the very root values of Canada as a nation, and Canadians as a people. 
It is critical to our society to maintain and enhance the policy underlying 
the Code through diligent surveillance and enforcement of its provisions. 

The evidence of Mrs. Blake is that she suffered a great deal because 
of her treatment by Mr. Loconte. She felt humiliation and fear. She is 
a responsible, diligent individual who is doing her best to succeed in life 
and to make a positive contribution to society. Given the very serious, 
continuing affront to Mrs. Blake's dignity and feelings, and taking into 
account all the circumstances of this case, I award Mrs. Blake $800.00 in 
general damages for the injury to her feelings and dignity caused by Mr. Lo- 
conte's discrimination against her. Mrs. Blake also suffered $209.80 in ex- 
penses (Exhibit #9) because of Mr. Loconte 's having a bailiff lock-up the 
premises, which I have found on the evidence to be an act of discrimination. 
As I have also found, in my findings, the maximum rent that the premises 
would have brought April 1, 1978 to March 31, 1981 is $550. per month. This 
means that to March 31, 1980, Mrs. Blake will have paid $1200. ($50. x 24 
months) more rent than she would have, but for the situation she is in which 
I have found to be due to Mr. Loconte 's acts of discrimination toward her. 
The continuing rent should be, on my findings, $550. a month for the balance 
of the renewed lease, ie. to March 31, 1981. 

1 A. Lester and G. Bindman, Race and Law , p. 73-4, Penguin, Eng. 1976. 

- 31 - 


For the foregoing reasons, this Board of Inquiry orders the following 

1. The rent for the premises known as 59 Dundas St. W., Mississauga pay- 
able by Mrs. Etna Blake, the Complainant, to Mr. N. Loconte, the Respondent, 
for the renewed lease for the term, April 1, 1978 to March 31, 1981, is $550.00 
per month. 

2. That Mr. N. Loconte, the Respondent, pay to Mrs. Etna Blake, the Com- 
plainant, the sum of $800. for damage to her dignity and feelings caused by his 
contravention of The Ontario Human Rights Code , such payment to be made to Mrs. 
Blake before May 1 , 1980. 

3. That Mr. N. Loconte, the Respondent, pay to Mrs. Etna Blake, the Com- 
plainant, the sum of $209.80 as special damages, in reimbursement of the ex- 
pense she was put to by his having a bailiff lock-up the premises which I have 
found to be an act of discrimination in contravention of The Ontario Human 
Rights Code , such payment to be made to Mrs. Blake before May 1, 1980. 

4. That Mr. N. Loconte pay to Mrs. Blake the sum of $1200.00 as special 
damages, representing the amount of $50.00 per month in excess of the rent that 
should have been charged ("the rent for comparable premises in like location" 
Exhibit #4) which I have found resulted from his acts of discrimination in con- 
travention of The Ontario Human Rights Code , such payment of $1200. to be made 
by way of Mrs. Blake setting-off $100.00 per month against the rental payment 
of $550.00 due in each of the remaining twelve months of the lease. The net 
rent payable by Mrs. Blake to Mr. Loconte for the period April 1, 1980 to March 
31, 1981, after taking into account the set-off of $100.00 per month is, there- 
fore, $450.00 per month. 

5. That Mr. N. Loconte, the Respondent, shall pay, if Mrs. Blake ceases 
to be a tenant for any reason in the premises of 59 Dundas St. West, Mississau- 
ga before March 31, 1981, forthwith to Mrs. Blake the balance of the $1200.00 
referred to in #4 above still owing to Mrs. Blake at that point in time, that 

- 32 - 

the remaining amount of the $1200.00 not set-off to that point in time. 
DATED at Toronto this 12th day of March, 1980. 

Peter A. Cumming 
Board of Inquiry